Great views, record shopping and Italian food

On Saturday morning we headed to Brooklyn Bridge Park to get some Manhattan skyline photos. Before getting to the park we had a bit of a breakfast “disaster”. I had checked out a bagel place online (La Bagel Delight) and we planned to have breakfast there but when we figured out it was more of a take-away shop with no seating we had to change our plans and it took us good half an hour to find somewhere for breakfast. I really don’t function well if meals get delayed as I have low blood sugar to start with so I did get cranky before I was fed. We ended up eating at AlMar, which was a really nice place for a spot of breakfast. Then we ventured out to the park for photos.

 

As one of our travel companions is a record enthusiast we headed to Manhattan to check out a couple of record stores. This resulted in some nice neighborhood pics. Our friend also found some records to buy. With the records in tow we headed to check out Grand Central Terminal, where we also enjoyed a spot of lunch in the form of hotdogs. Then we walked to the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building of the New York Public Library. After strolling around the neighborhood for a while we jumped on the subway and headed back to our flat.

A sculpture of three massive northern white rhinos at Astor Plac. The 17-foot bronze sculpture draws attention to the plight of the northern white rhino, whose extinction is imminent.
I love the traditional boards @ Grand Central

For dinner we decided to head to Little Italy as our friends really wanted to see the neighborhood but as we knew from experience that the area is really small we figured a small stroll before dinner would be enough to experience the place. After some tripadvisoring we had selected a place called Il Cortile for dinner and it was a wise choice. The restaurant has been serving traditional Northern Italian food since 1975. Even though the décor was exactly what you could expect from an Italian restaurant opened in the 1970s the service was lovely and the food impeccable. I had Avocado Bruschetta (Grilled Tuscan bread topped with avocado, red onion, roasted chili peppers, Gorgonzola & Balsamic Glaze) for my starter and hubby chose the Carpaccio from the specials menu. My main was Spaghettini Puttanesca Speciali (thin spaghetti with fresh grape tomatoes, capers, olives, anchovies & arugula in garlic & oil) and hubby chose the main from the specials menu as well, which was veal with mushrooms. After dinner we decided to have one more cocktail before heading home but made the mistake of leaving the lovely Il Cortile to find a bar. We did not find a bar and ended up at Cha Cha’s, which was a truly absurd experience. The guy at the door said they would have authentic live Italian music. Turned out it was played by some geriatric Mexicans and the singer was an overenthusiastic blond that would cheer her band on. The servers were also confused and tried to bring us bread and menus several times after being told we only wanted drinks. Luckily the G&Ts were strong enough to only make the absurdity funny.

More on New York later.

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